While TikTok often gets a bad rap as a time-waster, in reality, there are thousands of influencers on the app sharing content designed to inspire, educate and encourage creativity.
It's no wonder then that a recent survey by Study.com found that 1 in 4 Americans use TikTok to enrich their education, with over half doing so because it's easier to understand. So, rather than tell your kids to stop scrolling, here are three ways to leverage TikTok to enhance your children's learning outside the classroom:
- Music-making: Did you know that short, digestible TikToks are making it easier than ever to learn to play the piano online? From @gray_toven, who offers quick tutorials of trending music to @thepianopath, who provides time-strapped prospective piano players tips for getting started, there is an array of content to suit the needs of students looking for instruction and motivation. Just be sure to pair these resources with a great keyboard. The CT-S1, the spiritual successor to the original Casiotone CT-201, allows anyone to make music, regardless of skill level or budget. A stylish, ultra- portable keyboard offering great sound quality, it's an ideal musical partner for beginners and seasoned players alike. Plus, it connects to the free Casio Music Space app, which acts as digital musical score, music teacher, live performance simulator, and all-round tool to enjoy learning and playing music.
- Language learning: The best way to get fluent in a new language is to hear it spoken aloud and to have actual conversations. Fortunately, there are plenty of TikTok accounts making it easy to pick up new vocabulary, absorb grammar, learn common phrases and even connect with a community of students. Check out @yospanishofficial, which in addition to quick TikToks packed with tips and short lessons, also offers a weekly role play on Zoom so that students can practice conversational Spanish with others on the same mission. Or, to get familiar with Chinese words and phrases you'll need in common scenarios, such as ordering food in a restaurant or asking for a Wi-Fi password, @chinesewithyan is a great place to start.
- Homework help: Students no longer need to do their math homework alone. TikTok "tutors" abound that help guide students through their lessons, often in unique and creative ways. For example, @melodiesformath explains important math concepts through songs, whereas @your.bummy.math.tutor dishes tips for saving critical time on tests and acing important exams, like the SAT. TikTok tutors are also familiarizing students with their scientific or graphing calculator, so they can arrive at the answer quickly and easily with their device. Pair these virtual lessons with the latest in calculator technology, such as the fx-991CW ClassWiz, which can store and recall up to nine variables that can contain integers, computations and functions. The variables will remain in the calculator's memory between sessions. Plus, by partnering the ClassWiz with an internet-capable mobile device, solutions can be graphed and visualized through ClassPad.net, a free online workspace for computation, graphing, geometry, statistics and more, by scanning a QR code on the calculator's screen.
While TikTok may not seem like a learning tool, by digging a little deeper, you'll find complicated concepts and information explained in bite-sized chunks on a familiar and fun interface.